English Defence League bomb hoax case jury discharged
A JURY has failed to reach a verdict in the case of a man who sent a message to the English Defence League claiming the right wing group's march through Bristol was going to be bombed.
Father-of-five Sakander Mahmood, 26, admitted sending the group a message last year through its website which said: "14th July in Bristol, You are getting bombed".
But the Sheffield taxi driver told the city's crown court he never meant it to be taken seriously and denied a charge of communicating a bomb hoax with intent.
The EDL march from Redcliffe Wharf to Queen Square, staged to protest at what it called the "Islamification" of Bristol, was the focus of a huge police operation to keep supporters of the right-wing group and anti-fascist counter demonstrators apart.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Friday, May 31 2013
More than 1,000 officers from forces across the UK were on the streets of the city and two were injured in violent clashes. The operation cost the taxpayer about £500,000.
Police estimated about 300 EDL members took part, with about 500 attending a counter-demonstration called We Are Bristol.
During the trial the court heard Mahmood had told police who arrested him that his threat to bomb the demonstration was made "just for a laugh".
But Helen Gower, the personal assistant of EDL leader Tommy Robinson, told the court she was "very distressed" when the email was forwarded to her on July 11.
After five hours of deliberation yesterday the jury could not agree a verdict and was discharged by trial judge Recorder Andrew Dallas.
The Crown Prosecution Service has been given a week to decide whether to seek a retrial.
Mahmood was given unconditional bail.